This weeks Sunday New York Times had a great article titled “Why Everyone Seems to Have Cancer” and the summary is….as we live longer and reduce the greatest killer of people, HEART DISEASE, Cancer comes to dominate as the major cause of death.
The statistics clearly show reductions in premature death from heart disease and stroke, as well as reductions in death from cancer; only cancer death reductions are less than those seen in heart disease. Why that is, is the source of great interest, but mostly has to do with the great strides in prevention of heart disease with diet, exercise, and cholesterol medications….and improved treatment of acute illness from stenting, balloon treatments, acute management in the intensive care unit.
Cancer deaths have declined since 1990, mostly due to reduced lung cancer cases, but also as the result of great strides in specific types of childhood and adult cancers, as well as incremental improvements in a whole host of common cancers.
So….the statistics clearly show we are making strides in treating cancer. Let’s recognize our success but focus on further improvements in the future.